30 Sep 2019

10 eCommerce Platforms for Subscriptions & Membership

With the increasing amount of companies taking their business away from traditional high-street stores, we’re seeing an upward trend of eCommerce being THE WAY TO SHOP. For this reason, people are looking for the perfect shopping experience. Sure, Amazon is great, and you should dive in and take your share of their $232.88 billion revenue.

But who wants to put their whole business in the hands of a big corporation? Instead, smart business owners are looking to form long-term relationships with stores that they can trust, and small businesses are getting rewarded for this shift in buyer preferences.

In this article, we’ll explore the ins-and-outs of subscription eCommerce and then delve into the 10 best eCommerce platforms for subscriptions and membership. 

What is Subscription eCommerce?

eCommerce is one thing – selling your products online, but eCommerce subscription is a whole new business model. Businesses offer subscription-based eCommerce for consumers to regularly receive goods (either digital or physical). For example, consumables that are required regularly, like shampoo, wine or socks. Subscription services can also deliver digital goods, think of Netflix or Audible. There are a plethora of ways to offer subscription-based eCommerce products and services. Other examples of subscription-based eCommerce businesses are the Dollar Shave Club, Teabox and Ipsy.

With 79% of US customers stating that they would be more likely to buy if they were offered free shipping – you could offer FREE shipping as a perk of your online subscription platform. You must get creative and provide a subscription service that is both needed and useful and provides world-class products conveniently and at the best price.

What are the Benefits of Subscription eCommerce?

If you’re looking to get started in the world of eCommerce subscription then you need a robust eCommerce platform that supports your needs. One thing that’s amazing about starting a subscription-based eCommerce site is that you’ll be working with repeat custom (a lot) and this means that you can take advantage of the fact that customer retention (ie. Selling to repeat customers)   is seven times more profitable than going out and attempting to acquire new customers.

You have the opportunity to build a relationship and talk to your customers regularly if they are members or subscribe to your website. You can then promote your other products to them, in a non-sleazy way of course. This equates to more sales and happier customers.

Cash-flow management is important in business and many businesses don’t know where their next income, lead or sale will come from. With the eCommerce subscription or membership model, you’ll be able to consistently know how much money will be coming in, allowing you to plan and make better business decisions.

1. Wix ($18 / month)

BEST FOR – Wix is a brilliant comprehensive web builder solution for complete beginners.

You can get up and running in a matter of hours with Wix because it is so easy. Wix also has a paid membership feature, that you can use to receive recurring monthly payments. This is a relatively new feature from Wix. You can make a custom membership section within Wix and show members pages that apply to their membership. This can be used for both digital and physical recurring subscription packages.

To get started you can sign up for a Wix account in seconds with your Facebook or Google ID. Then select the type of store you are starting, such as Electronics, Food & Drink or Beauty & Wellness. Setting up everything is easy with Wix.  You get a free domain name, the hosting is all done on the site and they even throw in free logo design.

Click Here To Visit Wix

Pros
  • Super easy to set up
  • Free domain name
  • £75 Ad vouchers
  • Commission-free
  • Professional logo
Cons
  • Not 100% customizable

2. WooCommerce (FREE)

BEST FOR – Free WordPress  eCommerce plugin offering ultimate freedom and flexibility

If you’re a fan of WordPress, WooCommerce will be a strong contender for your eCommerce subscription website. You’ll get all of the benefits of WordPress, such as easy content management, plugins, and themes and also be able to take advantage of its eCommerce capabilities.  Continually adding blog content is not only great to add value for your customers, but you can also attract new custom via SEO and inbound content marketing with a great blog attached to your store.

WooCommerce is a plugin that you can use with WordPress to make it into an online store. Most importantly, it allows you to take recurring subscription payments and manage your offering. WooCommerce, like WordPress, isn’t just cheap, it’s free, however, you’ll want to choose a nice theme or have someone create a custom web design for your website to make it stand out. Woocommerce has a lot of support and documentation online, making it a brilliant cost-effective solution for your eCommerce subscription website. You can also install additional plugins to boost your sites ranking on Google with great SEO plugins for WordPress.

One thing that I’d warn people who are new to WordPress is that because it is an open-source platform there are a lot of plugins that can leave your website open to hacking. So make sure to install some extra security to prevent your site from being hacked.  WooCommerce can also be integrated with Shopify, Amazon, and Magento.  

Click Here To Visit Woocommerce

Pros
  • Free Plugin
  • Use with WordPress
  • Integrate with Shopify, Amazon and Magento.
Cons
  • Easily hacked
  • Hard to navigate
  • Tech experience needed

3. Shopify ($9 per month + $15.95 per month)

BEST FOR – All in one eCommerce solution with multiple apps and add-ons

Shopify is one a leader in the eCommerce space. They also offer a subscription app that you can use to take recurring subscription payments. The app costs $15.95 per month on top of your Shopify fee. The app is specifically designed for subscription boxes and includes a build-a-box feature for both digital and physical ordering. You can start setting up your Shopify store with a free trial and the app comes with a free 3-day trial so that you can test-drive everything.

Click Here To Visit Shopify

Pros
  • Easy add-on for Shopify
  • 0% recurring fee
  • Scaleable
  • Responsive themes
  • Add on apps
Cons
  • Restrictive
  • Can get expensive with all of the apps

4. Squarespace Commerce Advanced ($46/ Month)

Best for – Beginners who need an all-in-one hosting and website builder

If you are new to the eCommerce world, it’s a good idea to get an all in one solution until you become familiar with all of the moving pieces that are involved with your eCommerce subscription service.  Squarespace does just that, you get everything that you need (apart from the payment gateway in one place).  Most importantly, Squarespace supports subscription models. They also provide a tonne of nice themes for your eCommerce store.

Squarespace also allows you to install a blogging module so that you can also add a blog to your eCommerce store. Blogs can be an important source of traffic, so this component is great to add on to your eCommerce subscription site.  They also offer comprehensive online tutorials, making Squarespace a great solution for the complete beginner. Squarespace can also be integrated with Amazon, WordPress, Spotify, and Magento.

Click Here To Squarespace

Pros
  • Great for beginners
  • Web builder and hosting included
  • Easy to use
  • Blogging module
Cons
  • Expensive

5. BigCommerce ($29.95 / Month)

BEST FOR – Customizable eCommerce platform

BigCommerce is not as easy to use for complete beginners as say Wix is, but it does offer some really great features for your eCommerce store. You can also create content to attract inbound customers. Once you get the hang of it BIGCommerce can be a great eCommerce platform that is available at a decent price.  They also offer 24/7 customer support if you get stuck with anything. If you are completely fresh when it comes to creating online spaces, then you might want to get some help if you decide to go with BIGCommerce

BigCommerce can be integrated with WordPress, Amazon, Shopify and Magento. If you’re looking for a feature-rich solution and you have some tech expertise then BigCommerce is well worth a look.

Click Here To Visit Bigcommerce

Pros
  • Feature Rich
Cons
  • Not for complete beginners

6. Recurly ($99 per month)

BEST FOR – Larger organizations looking to enhance subscription platform

Recurly is specifically designed for subscription management. They put a lot of emphasis on data analysis to improve the performance of your eCommerce subscription site. Recurly powers some of the biggest subscription sites out there and say they are “The Top Subscription Platform for Maximizing Revenue”. They offer a 30-day free trial so that you can test drive the entire platform. If you are looking for a top of the range eCommerce subscription platform then Recurly is well worth a look.

Click Here To Visit Recurly

Pros
  • Great analytics
  • Feature-rich
  • Coupon & discount tools
  • Quickbooks Integration
Cons
  • Expensive

7. POWr for Big Cartel ($10)

BEST FOR –Artist and makers running a Big Cartel Website

If you’re running an eCommerce site on Big Cartel, then you are most likely an artist, photographer or creator. To make your store into a subscription site you can use the POWr plugin for FREE. You don’t need to know any coding to integrate the POWr order form plugin . Best of all it’ll match your website branding. If you need more features, like discount codes or customization then POWr offers an advanced feature set that costs $8.09

Click Here To POWr

Pros
  • No coding required
  • Great for creators
  • Easy to deploy
Cons
  • Only for Big Cartel

8. OsCommerce (FREE)

BEST FOR –Those with tech skill looking for a solution that is cheap to deploy

OsCommerce is an all in one open-source eCommerce platform. If you have your own hosting, or you are happy to set one up with a hosting provider then you can deploy OSCommerce free of charge. You’ll need some tech experience to get OsCommerce up and running. Older versions of OsCommerce don’t allow you to take subscription payments, so you’ll need to ensure that you have RC2.2 version or newer to set up your subscription store.

Click Here To Oscommerce

Pros
  • Cheap
  • Customizable
Cons
  • Complicated to use

9. 3dcart

BEST FOR –Fast growing eCommerce owners with no technical skills, SEO-friendly
3dcart is a reliable and centralized platform that is gaining the confidence of users worldwide.

With 3dcart, you get an easy-to-use e-commerce platform that doesn’t require any software development skills. At the same time, they also offer you an optimized and advanced structure that’s capable of handling hundreds of products. This is great for businesses that are growing fast and need a suitable SEO friendly solution.

Finally, when it comes to subscriptions and recurring payments they offer an out of the box solution already included so, once again, no need for plugins or add-ons.

Click Here To 3dcart

Pros
  • Easy to use
  • No Transaction fees
Cons
  • None

10. OpenCart Express ($100)

BEST FOR –Advanced web developers/ designers that can customize as required

OpenCart is an open-source eCommerce platform that allows a lot of flexibility as to how you would like your store to look and perform. You can get a lot of additional functionality by using some of the extensions available from OpenCart. A few things you need to take into consideration – OpenCart is not easy to deploy, you’ll most likely need the help of a computer programmer to get the site as you want it. You also won’t have support from the company as it is open-source, but you can ask the community in the online forum or help and support.

This platform can be modded up the way you want, but you’ll also need some web hosting to put the site on and a domain name. If you want something easier, then Wix or Shopify are great options.

Pros
  • Open-source, so customizable
Cons
  • Complicated to set up

How to take Subscription Payments?

To take subscription payments for your eCommerce subscription store, you’ll need to integrate your chosen platform with a Payment Gateway. Thankfully it is easier than ever to set up an account and get up and running with your eCommerce subscription site. Years ago we had to deal with banks and complex systems, but now you can get everything set up in minutes from the comfort of your own home. There are many payment gateways to choose from, but the following are two of our favorites:

Payment Gateways to Integrate with Your eCommerce Store

11. Stripe

BEST FOR – Easy setup in minutes for UK, European and US businesses

Most platforms now have Stripe as one of the default settings. They have simple application program interfaces (APIs) that you can use to integrate with your online store. Stripe is an online payment processor that is primarily used in the UK, Europe, and the US. However, you can use Stripe Atlantas to set your eCommerce store up as a US company if you live in another location.

If you are in the UK, Europe or the US then you can set up your Stripe account and integrate it with your eCommerce store in minutes. Stripe can easily be integrated with most platforms such as – WordPress, Clickfunnels, Amazon, Shopify, and Magento.

Click Here To Stripe

Pros
  • Easy setup
  • Great API
Cons
  • Transaction fee (2.9% + 30cents per sale)
  • Waiting time for payments to arrive in bank

12. Paypal

BEST FOR – Quick account setup, fast payments, popular and easy to use

Paypal is a really easy payment gateway to use. I’d say it’s simpler than Stripe to setup in most cases. So if you want something quick and easy, then Paypal is a great option. The only thing is that they limit the amount of money you withdraw until your account has been up and running for a while. You can still take payments, but that’s something to bear in mind, if you have to buy stock. 

Click Here To Paypal

Pros
  • Easy to set up
  • Fast withdrawl time
Cons
  • 5% transaction fee
  • Limit on initial amounts you withdraw

The Bottom Line

Make sure that you are offering a subscription service that is needed and useful. Selecting the best platform will lay a good foundation, that is – if people require the solution that you are offering.  Tailor your packages to your customer needs by speaking with them and optimizing your offering. Creating an eCommerce subscription can be a rewarding experience that brings recurring residual income, but it does need managed. Having a few payment methods can be a bonus – you could even allow people to pay in Bitcoin if that is something you are interested in.

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30 Sep 2019

7 Best Windows ASP.Net Web Hosting

ASP.net is a programming language or more accurately an open-source server-side web application framework. If you’re looking for a great ASP.net web host, then you might have a complex application that needs a powerful web host or aim to build one. Perhaps you have a  site that uses DotNetNuke, Umbraco or nopCommerce and needs a great ASP.NET host. If that’s the case, this article is for you.

You’ll need a secure Windows server environment Microsoft is continually improving the .NET framework, the latest version is 4.7.2. You’ll need a web host that will support the framework that your app is built-in. Alternatively, you can migrate to the latest version and tweak your app as appropriate. While .NET is backward compatible, some components get updated so using the latest version of the .NET framework is advisable.

The ideal .Net host will have a Windows server, optimized for ASP.NET scripts, be scalable and offered at a great price. That being said, Let’s explore the best Windows ASP.NET hosting options that are currently available.

7 Best Windows ASP Net Web Hosting (More than IONOS) #Windows #hosting Click To Tweet

1.SmarterASP.NET ($2.95/ Month)

BEST FOR – 60-Day Trial (No Credit Card), US and European Small-Medium Businesses

Founded back in 1999, SmarterASP.NET has focused on providing cost-effective solutions for Microsoft ASP.NET hosting for two decades. The parent company is Global Passive System & BusinessICS Intl Limited in the US. If you are looking for a company that specializes in ASP.NET websites then SmarterASP.NET could be the “smart” choice. 

If you’re looking to target people in the UK and US then SmarterASP.NET is great, as they have servers in these two locations. SmarterASP.NET also offers an amazing 60-day free trial that doesn’t require a credit card. So you can give them a go and you ‘ve got nothing to lose.

SmarterASP.NET Packages and Pricing

All of the servers come with MSSQL databases, high-quality SSD drives, and security features. Whatsmore, you’ll also get 24/7 support with the free trial, can’t say fairer than that.  SmarterASP.NET also has automatic data backups on all of the plans, apart from the free trial. If you are looking to schedule tasks or run Cron Jobs, then you’ll need to select their .NET PREMIUM package.

  • W60 60 DAYS Trial (FREE) – 1GB webspace, 1 website, 1 domain name, 10GB bandwidth, 1 FTP account, 1 MSSQL database
  • .NET Basic ($2.95/ Month) – unlimited webspace, 1 website, unlimited domain names, unlimited  bandwidth, unlimited FTP accounts, 1 MSSQL database
  • .NET Advance ($4.95/ Month) – unlimited webspace, 1 website, unlimited domain names, unlimited  bandwidth, unlimited FTP accounts, 6 MSSQL database
  • .NET Premium ($7.95/ Month) – unlimited webspace, 1 website, unlimited domain names, unlimited  bandwidth, unlimited FTP accounts, unlimited databases

Click Here To Visit Smarterasp

Pros
  • 60-day free trial (no credit card required)
  • Dedicated ASP.NET host
  • 24/7 Support
  • Unlimited Bandwidth and webspace
Cons
  • US & European servers only

2. A2 Hosting ($3.70/ Month)

BEST FOR –Blazingly fast ASP.NET Windows shared web hosting

A2 Hosting is a blazingly fast website host that offers Windows hosting. A2 Hosting has been established since 2001 and they have an unheard-of “anytime discount”. For these reasons alone, I feel they deserve the top spot as one of the best Windows ASP.NET hosts out there. You can either go for VPS hosting or shared hosting for your ASP.NET solution.

A2 Hosting Packages and Pricing

When it comes to picking the fastest shared windows hosting provider, then the “Turbo” plan for just $8.14 per month is the best option from A2 Hosting.  All of the shared Windows hosting from A2 Hosting has an anytime money-back guarantee and free & easy site transfer. Their three Windows shared hosting packages are as follows:

  • Lite ($3.70/ month) – 1 website, 5 databases, unlimited storage, unlimited transfer, Plesk Onyx 17.8 Control Panel and free SSL & SSD
  • Swift ($4.44/month) – Unlimited Websites, Unlimited Databases, Storage, Transfer, Plesk Onyx 17.8 Control Panel, Free SSL & SSD
  • Turbo ($8.14/month) – Unlimited Websites, Unlimited Databases, Unlimited Storage, Unlimited Transfer, Plesk Onyx 17.8 Control Panel, Free SSL & SSD, Turbo (Up To 20X Faster), A2 Site Accelerator

Click Here To Visit A2hosting

Pros
  • 24/7 live chat
  • 99.92% uptime
  • Unlimited Bandwidth
  • Free SSL
  • Anytime money-back guarantee
Cons
  • High renewal rates
  • No Turbo on the lower plans

3. Bisend ($3.95/ Month)

BEST FOR – Managed hosting for small to medium-sized businesses serving the US or Hong Kong

Bisend was founded in 2011 and is owned by Light Red Tech Co Ltd, a UK based company.  Bisend is a company that specializes in ASP.NET hosting, as the name suggests. They have invested in powerful solid-state drives (SSD) shared and VPS hosting packages. You get the leading industry-standard control panel for Windows – “Plesk” when you choose Bisend. Bisend has servers in both the US and Hong Kong. They offer a ready-code environment so that you can get coding as soon as you purchase a server from them. They also have their servers built with the latest Microsoft Windows technology.

Bisend Windows  ASP.NET Packages and Prices

Bisend offers a free domain name for the first year and free SSL certificates. You can choose from their US of Hong Kong server locations.

  •  Standard ($3.95/ Month) – 1 website, 10GB SSD Disk Space, 50GB Bandwidth, 50 Email Accounts, Site Memory: 256MB, 2GB Database
  • Pro ($5.95 / Month) – 5 websites, Unlimited SSD Disk Space, Unlimited Bandwidth, 100 Email Accounts, 2x faster than the “Standard hosting” Site Memory: 512MB, 4GB Database
  • Business ($13.95 / Month) – Unlimited Websites, Unlimited SSD Disk Space, Unlimited Bandwidth, Unlimited Email Accounts – 4x faster than Pro plan, Site Memory: 768MB, 8GB Database

Click Here To Visit Bisend

Pros
  • 24/7 Support
  • Code-Ready Environment
  • Free SSL Certificates
  • 30-day money-back guarantee
Cons
  • US and Hong Kong servers only
  • New hosting company

4. WinHost ($3.95/ Month)

Best for – Premium Windows Hosting Specialist, one-click app installation

WinHost specializes in premium Windows hosting. They offer one-click installation for ASP.NET applications like nopCommerce and DotNetNuke. They support Windows 2016-2018 hosting and ASP.NET core hosting as well as just about every type of .net hosting you could want. They also offer free website migration so that you can minimize downtime if you want to port your website over to WinHost.

WinHost Packages and Pricing

Winhost offers four plans that get cheaper if you sign up for their 2-year package. SiteLock security is an add-on for the lower two plans ($19.95 /yr) but free for the higher two plans. The prices increase by the number of FTP users that you need.

  • Basic Plan ($3.95/month) – 3GB disk space, 50GB bandwidth, 10 FTP users
  • Max Plan ($7.95/ month) – Unlimited disk space and bandwidth, 30 FTP users
  • Ultimate Plan ($15.95 /Month) – Unlimited disk space and bandwidth, 100 FTP users
  • Power Plan ($39.95 /Month) – Unlimited disk space and bandwidth, 250 FTP users

Click Here To Winhost

Pros
  • 24/7 Support
  • 99.9% uptime
  • One-click app installer
Cons
  • SiteLock Security isn’t free on Basic and Max plans

5. HostGator ($4.60/ Month)

BEST FOR – Personal or small business hosting

HostGator was founded back in 2002 and is now a household name in the hosting space. HostGator is an award-winning website host and is one of the leading hosting providers that is most popular for its reseller hosting packages. As with most hosts, the longer you sign up with HostGator, the cheaper your hosting will be. You can get either shared, VPS or dedicated server hosting packages for Windows. To keep things simple we are just looking at the “shared” Windows hosting for now.

HostGator Packages and Pricing

Hostgator offers two Windows hosting packages for you to host your ASP.net website, both offer unmetered disk space and bandwidth, as well as free SSL certificates. You also benefit from the Parallels Plesk Panel and MSSQL. The packages they offer are as follows:

  • Personal Plan ($4.76/month)– 1 domain, unmetered disk space, unmetered bandwidth, FREE SSL website security certificate
  • Enterprise Plan ($14.36/month) – 5 domains, unmetered disk space, unmetered bandwidth, FREE SSL website security certificate, FREE dedicated IP

Click Here To Visit Hostgator

Pros
  • 24/7/365 customer support
  • 99.9% uptime-guarantee
  • 45-day money-back guarantee
  • Reputable host
Cons
  • Higher pricing

6. DiscountASP.NET ($10/Month)

BEST FOR – Certificated Microsoft Golden partner, FREE domain name

Another dedicated ASP.NET website host that is a certificated Microsoft Golden partner and offers data centers in the US an Europe/ UK is DiscountASP.NET. DiscountASP.NET was founded back in 2003 and offers 24/7/365 support. They support all of the latest Microsoft updates. They also offer a free domain name and they are fully licensed under the Microsoft’s Service Provider Licensing Agreement (SPLA) Program. Despite being called “Discount”ASP.net, they are one of the more expensive providers on this list.

ASP.NET Packages and Pricing

Unlike most other hosts on this list, ASP.NET offers just one ASP.NET hosting plan. This could be a pro or a con. The plan comes with free months free if you pay upfront for a year. The features offered are as follows:

  • Base Web Hosting Plan($10 / Month) – 1000MB disk space, 80GBB monthly data transfer, free website migration, control panel, 500 email addresses

Click Here To Visit Discountasp.Net

Pros
  • First 3 months FREE
  • 30-day money-back guarantee
  • Expert support
Cons
  • Charge for MSSQL databases
  • Just one package
  • Expensive

7. 1&1 IONOS ($1/Month)

BEST FOR –Reliable, cost-effective, feature-rich web hosting

1&1 IONOS is one of the biggest and best web hosting companies in the world. They were founded in 1998 and currently have over 12 million customers. As a well-established web host, you know that you can put your trust in 1&1 IONOS. They also offer 24/7 customer support, should you need to resolve any issues.  Although I was tempted to put these guys at the top of the list, they do up their price to $8 after the initial period (6 or 12 months) has expired, so I put them in their relevant “realistic” place on the list. Afterall the article title did say “more than just IONOS”. But realistically – they are fantastic at what they do.

Amazingly all three of IONOS’s Windows plans come in at $1 for at least the first 6 months. The “Business” plan stays at this price for a massive 12 months, which is impressive. Here is an overview of their ASP.NET hosting packages and pricing:

  • Business ($1/month for 12 months, then $8 per month) – 1 Website, 100GB storage, 25 MSSQL DBs, 25 email accounts free domain
  • Pro ($1/month for 6 months, then $10 per month) – 5 Website, 250GB storage, 100 MSSQL DBs, 100 email accounts free domain, SiteLock malware protection
  • Expert ($1/month for 6 months, then $14 per month) – 50 Websites, 500GB storage, 500 MSSQL DBs, 500 email accounts free domain, SiteLock malware protection, Content Delivery Network (CDN)

Click Here To 1&1 IONOS

Pros
  • 90-Day money-back guarantee
  • $1/ Month Start-up deals
Cons
  • No live chat

The Bottom Line

Windows ASP.NET web hosting differs from Linux hosting by what you can install on the server and the databases you use. It’s important to find a host that offers free MSSQL databases and a Plesk control panel. In this article, we’ve focused on shared Windows hosting but it’s important to note that you can also get dedicated Windows hosting and VPS hosting for Windows. When selecting a host, look for the resources you get for the price you are paying. 

 

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30 Sep 2019

7 Best Reseller Hosting Providers of 2019

Looking to find the best reseller hosting deals? Well, you’ve come to the right place. Whether you want to start a fully-fledged hosting company, or you’re a developer or web designer who wants to add hosting to your offering, this article will help you choose the best option to fit your individual needs.

In all instances, you’ll need a stable, secure hosting provider that offers reliable customer support. The last thing you want is to be stuck in the middle, imagine – your client needs help, but you can’t give it to them as you are waiting for your reseller to get back to you. That is just one aspect that needs to be considered when searching for your reseller hosting partner. 

In this article we’ll explore your options while paying particular attention to customer support, white-label options, billing and management. 

7 Best Reseller Hosting Providers of 2019 #reseller #onlinebusiness #hosting Click To Tweet

What is Reseller Hosting?

Reseller hosting or a reseller hosting account is a service that many web hosting providers offer so that you can effectively create your own hosting company by reselling their services. Basically you can set up a hosting company by reselling hosting plans from other established hosts. Meaning that you don’t have to invest in software or hardware, as the reseller account will come with everything you need.  They normally offer some decent tools and software for you to manage customers and some even offer the ability to outsource your customer support to them.

Selecting the Best Hosting Reseller

When looking for the best hosting reseller it pays to do your due diligence. We’ve gone the extra mile to analyse each of the hosts presented in this article so that you can make an informed choice with ease. It’s not always enough to simply look at the website, as the service that they offer is often exaggerated on the sales pages. We’ve done the leg-work so that you don’t have to.

1. InMotion Hosting

BEST FOR – Scalable All-round Web Hosting, Cheap & Easy to Use for Beginners

Often smaller hosting companies like InMotion offer some great deals when compared with larger companies due to the fact they are more interested in serving customers, rather than merely optimizing everything for profit. InMotion Hosting is one of these smaller hosting companies that you should be aware of when deciding what reseller hosting provider to choose. 

InMotion Features

You’ll get the industry-leading WHM control panel when you sign up to InMotion as a reseller. This is standard for just about every webhost on the planet right now. InMotion do automated backups so that you don’t have to worry about outages or hackers destroying your servers, you’ll always have a backup to go back to even if you forget, as its all automated. Although a small company, InMotion has invested in decent kit – like Solid State Drives (SSD) disks throughout their entire company. 

InMotion Packages and Pricing

InMotion offers both shared and VPS reseller hosting that both allow you to allocate resources as you wish. The shared hosting plan is ideal for people starting out as you know that you have the flexibility to scale as you need. Their VPS hosting plan gives you more resources and additional features that you’ll need when you have more clients. Their service is easy to use, even for the complete beginner. You can also hand out SSL certificates, which are required for all websites, especially to ensure your web hosting is SEO friendly.

White Labeling

With InMotion you can re-brand everything as they offer a white label service to resellers. That way you can present a professional solution to your clients. There are also unlimited cPanels that you can offer to your clients to manage their hosting package.

InMotion Pricing

The packages and pricing with InMotion go in a tidy tiered fashion that so that you can scale up as and when you need resources. InMotion also offer a generous 90-day money back guarantee, so you can’t go wrong. The three shared reseller hosting packages are as follows:

 

  • R-1000S ($15.39/Month) – 80GB Disk space, 800GB bandwidth, dedicated IP, unlimited cPanels

 

  • R-2000S ($21.99/Month) – 120GB Disk space, 1200GB bandwidth, dedicated IP, unlimited cPanels
  • R-3000S ($30.24/Month) – 160GB Disk space, 1600GB bandwidth, dedicated IP, unlimited cPanels

As your hosting/ web development business grows then you might want to upgrade to a VPS package from InMotion. They offer three levels of reseller VPS hosting as follows:

  • Reseller VPS-1000 ($41.64) – 4GB RAM, 75GB Disk space, 4TB Bandwidth, 3 IP addresses
  • Reseller VPS-2000 ($41.64) – 6GB RAM, 150GB Disk space, 5TB Bandwidth, 4 IP addresses
  • Reseller VPS-3000 ($41.64) – 8GB RAM, 260GB Disk space, 6TB Bandwidth, 5 IP addresses

Click Here To Visit Inmotionhosting

Pros
  • Decent amount of resources with each plan
  • Good servers
  • Saleable – room to grow
  • Good for beginners
  • 90-Day money-back guarantee
Cons
  • Relatively few advanced features

2. A2 Hosting

BEST FOR – Anytime money-back guarantee and customer support

A2 Hosting are great for reseller hosting. They have brilliant customer support, which is high up on my list of required features for reselling. They also have a great track record with performance, security and speed. 

A2 Hosting Features

A2 Hosting’s reseller account comes with WebHost Manager (WHM), which is a tool that sits on top of your cPanel account and allows you to overview and manage multiple websites. WHM or something equivalent is required to manage your reseller account. 

The customer relations management (CRM) tools offered by A2 Host are Web Hosting Billing & Automation Platform (WHMCS) and Blesta. This is unusual as you normally only get WHM with most hosts.

WHMCS is the leading web hosting management and billing software that automates all aspects of your business such as billing, provisioning, domain reselling and much more. You can send out invoices, and reminders directly from the WHMCS dashboard. You can also manage customer requests with ease inside WHMCS, making the running of your hosting business a breeze. 

Blesta has been designed specifically for hosting providers, so it is a bit more specialized to the niche. The only real downside to Blesta is that it can be a bit tricky to navigate. While Blesta is great, it’s important to remember that WHMCS is the most popular CRM that is offered by most hosting resellers (for a reason).

A2 Hosting also offers the best in class SSD storage, Cloudflare CDN and free SSL certificates. I love the fact that you get free backups from A2 hosting, as I wouldn’t select a host without free backups, just in case anything goes wrong. 

A2 Hosting Packages and Pricing

A2 Hosting is one of those providers that gives you complete freedom. You can allocate server resources whichever way you want.

A2 Hosting is great when it comes to allocating resources, but when it comes to scaling your business, they are not so great. You can only have up to a maximum of 100 client accounts, and that is for their top-tier plan. So if you are thinking big, then you’ll need to be up for migrating when you get over 100 customers. 

Full White Labelling 

A2 hosting has you covered when it comes to building your brand. The whole entire system can be rebranded so that everything fits your company image. 

A2 Host Pricing

As with a lot of web hosts, you can get a better deal if you pay for a longer contract period.  They also offer a turbo boost feature that increases your server speed 20x for $6.60/month. If you need a dedicated IP address then you can buy that as an add-on for $4/month. 

They offer a decent 30-day money-back guarantee. The bronze plan isn’t that great as you don’t get WHMCS as part of the deal, you’ll need to pay an extra $10 for that. However, that’d be pretty pointless, because for $2 less you could upgrade to the silver plan.

  • Bronze at $19.99/month 30GB Bandwidth, 400GB storage – free Blesta
  • Silver at $27.99/month 75 GB Bandwidth, 600GB storage, free WHMCS, free Blesta
  • Gold at $36.99/month 150 GB Bandwidth, 1000GB storage, free WHMCS, free Blesta
  • Platinum at $61.99/month 200 GB Bandwidth, 2000GB storage, free WHMCS, free Blesta

Click Here To Visit A2hosting

Pros
  • Feature rich
  • Great servers
  • Cost effective
  • Anytime money-back guarantee
  • Blesta / WHMCS CRM tools
Cons
  • You are restricted in the amount of clients you can have
  • No WHMCS with bronze package

3. GreenGeeks

BEST FOR – Feature-rich environmentally friendly web host with unlimited resources

As you might imagine GreenGeeks is a webhosting platform that is eco-friendly. This alone is a brilliant angle for a web host in today’s business environment. They currently have over 40,000+ customers and have won a tonne of awards, as well as making the Inc.500 that recognises America’s fastest growing companies.

GreenGeeks Features

As well as being an environmentally friendly host, GreenGeeks offers some decent features. They give their resellers the WHM control panel pre-installed with Softaculous. This means that you can manage your client’s hosting accounts and install platforms like WordPress or Joomla with one click. For billing and CRM GreenGeeks provide the industry-standard WHMCS.

You’ll get everything that you need from GreenGeeks and more. They have invested in some fantastic hardware and software to make your life easier, and in turn you can offer these benefits to your customers. You’ll get free SSL certificates and daily backups as well as all of this they offer RAID-10 for your peace of mind. 

GreenGeeks Packages and Pricing

One thing I love about GreenGeeks is the fact that they offer unlimited reseller hosting. Unlike A2 Hosting, you are not restricted on what you offer your clients. Bear in mind that they do have an acceptable use policy so that people don’t take advantage of this generous offer. 

100% White Labeling Capabilities

You can easily rebrand everything to fit your company image with your GreenGeeks reseller hosting. 

GreenGeeks Pricing

As GreenGeeks offers unlimited bandwidth and storage, the pricing is tiered by the number of clients that you have. The pricing isn’t great for people with only a few clients but is more suited for a company that has more than 10 customers. However, they have recently dropped their prices so that they are more in line with A2 Hosting, I hope that they keep their prices low going forward.

  • Reseller 10 – $19.95/mo, 10 cPanel Accounts, Unlimited SSD Webspace, Unlimited Bandwidth, WHMCS license
  • Reseller 20 – $34.95, 20 cPanel Accounts, Unlimited SSD Webspace, Unlimited Bandwidth, WHMCS license
  • Reseller 30 – $44.95, 30 cPanel Accounts, Unlimited SSD Webspace, Unlimited Bandwidth, WHMCS license
  • Reseller 40 – $54.95, 40 cPanel Accounts, Unlimited SSD Webspace, Unlimited Bandwidth, WHMCS license
  • Reseller 50 – $59.95, 50 cPanel Accounts, Unlimited SSD Webspace, Unlimited Bandwidth, WHMCS license (buy additional accounts for $2 each)

Click Here To Visit Greengeeks

Pros
  • Great features
  • Unlimited Bandwidth
  • Unlimited Storage
  • Great customer support
  • Green company
  • Easy to set up
Cons
  • Acceptable use policy is vague

4. SiteGround

Best for – Beginners who require WordPress reseller hosting

SiteGround is a large website hosting company that was founded in 2004. They are based in Bulgaria and are best for WordPress hosting. SiteGround is on this list due to the exceptional features and customer service that they offer. If you’re specifically looking to be a WordPress reseller, then SiteGround could be the host for you. 

SiteGround Features

As a SiteGround reseller you get an advanced version of cPanel with Softaculous pre-installed. So that you can offer one-click solutions to your customers. For your CRM you don’t get anything like WHMCS or Blesta. Instead you’ll need to settle with something from the Softaculous package such as like Yetiforce. You’ll also get free SSL certificates, daily backups and high-performance servers. 

SiteGround Packages and Pricing

The plans that you can offer with your reseller account are only really suitable for complete beginners. You can offer 10GB of storage and your customers can get 10,000 visitors to their website per month. This is very limiting and doesn’t provide much scope for growth. 

100% White Labeling

You can re-brand everything that you get from SiteGround including your cPanel account, so that your customers have no idea that you are reselling their hosting. 

SiteGround Pricing

Buying packages from SiteGround is more like playing a video game. You need to purchase credits to buy hosting from them. The credits don’t expire which is great and they offer a 30-day money back guarantee.

  • 5-10 credits – $40 per credit. 
  • Over 10 credits – $37 per credit.

Click Here To Siteground

Pros
  • Excellent features
  • WordPress-optimized
  • Good for beginners
Cons
  • Restrictive plan
  • No WHMCS

5. ResellerClub

BEST FOR – The best Windows (and Linux) reseller hosting that is easy to scale

ResellerClub is owned by Endurance International Group (EIG) and is also offered as the reseller platform for Bluehost. BlueHost and ResellerClub have joined forces to enhance their reseller offering. ResellerClub offers the best Windows reseller package, many other providers have dropped support for Windows as such a small proportion of the internet runs on Windows. You can also resell website themes with ResellerClub, which is a nice touch. 

ResellerClub Features

ResellerClub offers some of the best Linux hosting features, and they also support Windows. If you opt for Windows you’ll have Plesk as a control panel and with Linux you get the standard WHM interface to manage your client accounts. Both the windows and Linux packages have similar features, and both come with WHMCS.

ResellerClub gives you everything that you need to set up your hosting company, for example, they offer free SSL certificates, backups and Cloudflare CDN.

ResellerClub Packages and Pricing

You have full say in how you want to allocate your resources with ResellerClub. 

100% White Labeling

With ResellerClub you can brand your hosting services with your own logo.  Making it look as though you have created everything. Both Plesk and WHM can be white-labeled. 

ResellerClub Pricing

Click Here To Visit Resellerclub

Pros
  • Rare Windows reseller hosting
  • Cost effective pricing
Cons
  • No live chat support
  • Limited features

6. HostGator

BEST FOR – Longstanding established web host with decent reseller features

HostGator is a massive web host that is owned by Endurance International Group (EIG). If you’re looking for an experienced host that has been around and serves millions of customers, then HostGator could be the reseller host for you. 

HostGator Features

HostGator uses the industry standard software to manage your server – WHM with cPanel. So, no surprises there. They also offer WHMCS so that you can manage your entire hosting business end-to-end without any fuss. WHMCS is used to manage accounts and billing. HostGator pretty much offers everything that you need, like free SSL certificates, off-site backups.

One big draw-back for me when it comes to choosing HostGator for resellers is that they don’t offer SSD hosting. Which is a bit old-fashioned in my opinion, to get SSD from them you’ll need to go with a dedicated server. 

HostGator Packages and Pricing

When you sign up with HostGator as a reseller you’ll be buying a specific amount of resources. You can then split these resources up between your customers. This could be seen as a pro or a con because allocating resources adds to your workload. Beginners may wish to go with a provider that has pre-determined packages to resell. 

100% White Labeling

Making your hosting company stand out is all a matter of branding, and HostGator have you covered here. You can re-brand everything as they offer a completely white label service to resellers. 

HostGator Pricing

As with a lot of hosting providers, the longer you sign up for – the cheaper the packages get. They also offer a nice 45-day money-back guarantee. The prices below are the cheapest that they offer, so if you want to sign up for a shorter period than 3 years, then you’ll need to pay a bit more. 

Another thing to watch out for with HostGator is that their prices will rise after the first term. So say you sign up for 3 years and get a nice discount, after the renewal, you’ll be paying full price again. In saying that, the Copper and Silver plan are currently the same price, but you get WAY more resources with the silver plan.

  • Aluminium Plan ($19.95+/Month) – 60GB Disk Space, 600GB Bandwidth, Unlimited Domains, Free SSL certificate
  • Copper Plan ($24.95+/Month) – 90GB Disk Space, 900GB Bandwidth, Unlimited Domains, Free SSL certificate
  • Silver Plan ($24.95+/Month) – 140GB Disk Space, 1400GB Bandwidth, Unlimited Domains, Free SSL certificate

Click Here To Visit Hostgator

Pros
  • Reliable
  • 45-Day money-back guarantee
  • Cost effective
Cons
  • Few outstanding features
  • No SSD with reseller package

7. Brixly

BEST FOR –Unlimited bandwidth, cost effective and outsourced customer support

Brixly is a relatively new hosting provider that is offering some brilliant reseller features. They also offer a nice 30-day money back guarantee and also a $1 trial on all of their reseller packages. Because they are new  and smaller, you get better packages and support from Brixly, which makes them an attractive option for resellers. Their servers are based in the UK and the US. 

Brixly Features

Brixly offers WHM as the standard web host management solution, so you can go over to them and be able to use the industry standard with minimum fuss. They also provide free SSL certificates and use SSD storage, which is perfect, as they are faster than standard hard drives. Brixly also offers daily backups for your peace of mind. I like the fact that they are daily and not weekly backups.

Brixly offers five different hosting packages, for which you’ll get free WHMCS with the two top-tier plans. 

Brixly Packages and Pricing

Brixly offers unlimited bandwidth on all of their reseller packages. They do have an acceptable use policy that states the maximum bandwidth that they really allow, which is a little bit of a con in my opinion. The good thing is that they have stated the amount of bandwidth that they feel deems “acceptable use” clearly in their terms of service. Which some providers shy away from. 

I love the fact that you can outsource your customer service to Brixly, making the whole package so much more attractive as you wont have to deal with customers or be the middle man. You can simply make money from their service.  In that respect Brixly is more of an affiliate host than a reseller hosting provider, although they pose as your company name. 

100% White Labeling

You can re-brand everything inside Brixly so that you present a unified brand image, instead of looking like a reseller or affiliate. 

Brixly Pricing

Brixly do a great deal to win you over, with a $1 trial on all plans and a money back guarantee. After which you’ll be paying full price and hopefully you enjoyed your Brixly test-drive. 

Click Here To Brixly

Pros
  • $1 Trial on all plans
  • Exceptional features
  • Attractive reseller plans
  • Customer support outsourcing
  • Great customer support
Cons
  • Not as reliable as established hosts
  • No free WHMCS with most plans

The Bottom Line

It’s important to ensure that your reseller offers decent tools for managing your account. All of the providers I’ve covered offer cPanel, WHM and normally WHMCS to handle billing. Some providers offer everything as part of the deal, others charge extra for WHMCS or withhold it for their higher-value customers. Also, the prices displayed on their site often go up after the initial period. So make sure that is something you’ve covered.

While A2 offers brilliant features, I am not so keen on the fact that they restrict the number of clients you can have. InMotion is a great smaller independent host, while GreenGeeks is great if you are keen on offering eco-friendly hosting. Basically you can set up your own hosting company for relatively cheap and little initial outlay. Also, you can decide what features suit your individual needs.

Reseller Club Pricing

  • R1 – £7.79, 40GB disk space, 800GB data transfer, unlimited websites – no WHMCS
  • R2 – £8.69, 50GB disk space, 1000GB data transfer, unlimited websites – free WHMCS
  • R3 – £11.49, 100GB disk space, 1000GB data transfer, unlimited websites – free WHMCS
  • R4 – £17.49, 200GB disk space, 4000GB data transfer, unlimited websites – free WHMCS

Brixly Pricing

  • Pro50 – 150GB Storage, Unlimited Bandwidth
  • Pro75 – 200GB Storage, Unlimited Bandwidth
  • Pro100 – 250GB Storage, Unlimited Bandwidth
  • Pro150 – 350GB Storage, Unlimited Bandwidth
  • Pro250 – 500GB Storage, Unlimited Bandwidth
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30 Sep 2019

Microsoft Website Builder – 5 Alternative Options

Just about everyone on the planet has heard about Microsoft, the American multinational technology company founded by Bill Gates and his childhood friend Paul Allen. Microsoft is the world’s largest software maker. Gates famously stated his mission of “a computer on every desk and in every home”. If mobile devices count, I’d say he has reached his goal. But how does Microsoft fair in the website building arena?

In this article we’ll dive deep into the world of Microsoft Website builder options. Firstly, let’s cover the basics. 

Does Microsoft Have a Website Builder?

Microsoft doesn’t seem to be a big player in the website builder arena. They used to provide a software package called “FrontPage” that ran the internet at one point, but support for this product is now discontinued. 

Microsoft FrontPage was available for almost two decades – however they stopped supporting it back in 2009. The old FrontPage HTML editor has since been replaced by Microsoft Expression Web and the lesser known Microsoft SharePoint Designer. Since 2012 Microsoft Expression Web 4 has been discontinued, however you can download it from their site. SharePoint Designer is also a thing of the past. 

Is Microsoft FrontPage still available?

Up until April 2014 Microsoft provided some extended support for FrontPage. Now they have completely discontinued the FrontPage web publishing software and it is no longer supported. You can however download the legacy software from the Microsoft website, so we’ll discuss the applications for the discontinued software should you like to give them a go. 

Because Microsoft has stepped out of the Web Builder Arena, we’ll also explore Microsoft supported web builder tools that you can take advantage of.

#1 | Microsoft Expression Web 4 (Free)

I chose Expression Web 4 to be first on the list because, despite support being pulled, Microsoft Expression Web 4 is an actual Microsoft visual website editor. Microsoft released Microsoft Expression Web 4 in 2006 and then dropped support in 2012. 

Specifically designed for Microsoft Developers, Microsoft Expression Web 4 supports ASP.Net and Microsoft Silverlight. You can edit your website code either directly or through their easy to use visual editor. 

Microsoft Expression Web 4 is especially good for embedding multimedia files like videos and photos on your web pages. This website editor has some nice features and is completely free, so it’s worth a go if you are looking specifically for a “Microsoft” website builder. 

Click Here To Visit Microsoft Expression Web 4

 

Pros
  • You can embed multimedia files
  • Visual Editor/ Edit code directly
  • Great for Microsoft developers
  • Completely free
Cons
  • Support is discontinued
  • Old fashioned appearance

#2 | Visual Studio Code

Visual Studio Code is more of a source-code editor than a website builder. However, as Microsoft website builders are slim pickings – I thought I’d throw it in.  If you’re looking to get into coding like a professional developer, then Visual Studio is brilliant. It has nice syntax highlighters and it’s free and open source. VS code is made for just about every programming languages like Python, C++, C#, Batch, F# and Objective-C. You can also create CSS files to make your website look stylish. The only caviate is that you’d need to get into coding to use Visual Studio. 

Click Here To Visit Visual Studio Code

Pros
  • Professional Set up
  • Free
  • Easy to use UX
  • Works in both Windows and MacOS
Cons
  • Not for beginners
  • No templates

#3 | Wix (for FREE)

Next up is Wix – a popular website building platform that has partnered with Microsoft Office 365. Meaning you can use your Microsoft Office 365 account and get your Wix subscription free. You can even login to your Wix account with your Office 365 details. Wix is a slick, modern website builder tool that is so easy, a young child could use it.  They offer clean and professional looking website templates that you can click to select and then all you have to do is drag and drop elements to complete your design. 

With Wix you have everything you need to build a website and get it up and running in a matter of minutes. You can even go in and make your pages just perfect with the Wix page editor. Wix has a wide range of helpful tutorials on using your Microsoft Office 365 subscription to create your Wix site. You can also connect an Office 365 to a domain on your Wix account.

Click Here To Visit Wix

Pros
  • Easy drag-and-drop designer
  • Professional website templates
  • Creates modern websites in minutes
  • Subscription included with Microsoft Office 365
  • Great for beginners
Cons
  • Not a Microsoft product

#4 |GoCentral (from $5.99 p/m)

GoCentral is the website builder tool from GoDaddy. GoCentral isn’t a Microsoft product, but like Wix, they’ve partnered with Microsoft. I like the fact that you get Microsoft Office 365 as part of your subscription with GoCentral. 

GoCentral has been designed with the modern short attention span in mind. They’ve stated that the platform has been created for you to create your website in an hour or less, which is fantastic if you want to give a website idea a go and are short of time. 

GoCentral isn’t wonderful when it comes to flexibility in your website creation. Also it can be quite slow. On a positive note, GoCentral is great for creating all types of website, including eCommerce sites.

Click Here To Visit GoCentral

Pros
  • Quick and easy to use
  • eCommerce sites included
  • Clean professional templates
  • Bundled with Microsoft Office 365
Cons
  • Not a Microsoft product
  • Slow
  • Limited design options

#5 | WebMatrix 3 (FREE)

Web Matrix 3 is yet another website builder from Microsoft that you can access for FREE. However, like FrontPage, Microsoft Expression Web and  Microsoft SharePoint Designer, support for Web Matrix 3 is discontinued, as of 2017. Hence, it’s now totally free and great for people who are working with older websites built in Web Matrix 3. 

Web Matrix is a software that was created for developers, specifically for those using HTML, PHP, CSS, and JavaScript. So it’s not as user friendly as site builders like Wix, and not for the novice. 

WebMatrix could be an interesting place to start if you want to learn to create websites for free. They offer a wide range of helpful tutorials that guide you through the entire process. You can jump on the WebMatrix site and download their software, select templates and even preview a mobile website view. 

Click Here To Visit WebMatric 3

Pros
  • Template Selection
  • Mobile preview
  • Great for coders and coding enthusiasts
Cons
  • Not for the novice
  • Support discontinued

#6 | Microsoft FrontPage

Yet another product from Microsoft that has seen its support pulled. FrontPage is great for those who want to work with legacy websites. FrontPage was one of the first website builders and a big thing in its day. However, as the internet exploded, so too did our options for website builders and editors. 

FrontPage was launched in 1997 and was one of the original website building platforms. They were the first platform to provide a What You See is What You Get (WYSIWYG) editor – so you could preview your websites before you put them online. Pretty standard in 2019 but back in 1997 the feature was quite revolutionary. 

As we are discussing Microsoft Website builders, I thought it was fitting to add FrontPage into the list as it paved the way for future website builders. FrontPage is SharePoint’s predecessor. 

# 7 |Microsoft Website Builder SharePoint

DepositFiles has servers in 9 countries, which is great for uploading and downloading. They also offer 10GB for free. With DepositFiles there are a few catches. One is that you’ll have to endure advertisements on your FREE account. Their site and user interface is also a bit dated and not very intuitive. You can upgrade to the gold membership which gets you faster upload and download speeds and you can pay with credit card or Bitcoin. DepositFiles pricing is a bit steep  at $12 per month, and with this you don’t get extra file storage.

One thing that is great about DepositFiles is the fact that you can send a link with password protection – even on the free plan. I also like the fact that they store your files for free for an unlimited time. 

Click Here To Visit Sharepoint

Pros
  • Great CMS for document management
Cons
  • Not for public website builds

In Conclusion

Both Wix and GoCentral are great options if you want any or all of the software products that you get bundled in the subscription package, like Word, Outlook and PowerPoint. If you already have those covered and are looking for a more comprehensive website builder from Microsoft you could go for Visual Studio Code. However, this product is specifically suited for people who want to do coding, whereas Wix and GoCentral are more designed for the complete beginner.

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